A Bunch of Things I Noticed At Texas Furry Fiesta 2019

Another year means another Furry Fiesta! This year I took the Amtrak up from San Antonio and had a fursuit for the first time!

  1. BEFORE – I’m going to be taking the Amtrak this year, which has me extra excited!
  2. Why take the train?
    1. I don’t have to drive.
    2. Parking was lousy last year.
    3. I didn’t have to leave the hotel last year so I don’t really need my car.
    4. I’m leaving on Thursday so there’s no hurry.
    5. Except for having to take a Lyft to the station it’s fairly cost-effective.
    6. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do.
  3. Having to wake up at 5AM to catch a Lyft to the train station does reduce that excitement just a little, though.
  4. Taking my partial fursuit to a convention for the first time, which is making packing…interesting.

    train to hell
    #12. Oops
  5. Funny thing: Cosplays with a partial fursuit are easy: Wear a jersey: Sports Bear! Wear a lab coat: Scientist Bear! Wear a shirt and tie: Business Bear!
  6. It’s going to be hard to split time between fursuiting, taking pictures, hanging out with friends and panels!
  7. I’m mad at myself for losing the pre-game podcast audio that Chris and I recorded, have to be sure to not repeat that error after the con.
  8. Note to self: I need more T-shirts with bears on them.
  9. I said the wrong episode number on the make-up podcast recording. Fuzz it.
  10. THURSDAY/TRIP UP – I won’t need them at all but I have my keys. Hard habit to shake.
  11. Taking a Lyft for the first time as a passenger. I used to drive so it’s interesting to see it from the other side. Thanks Gregg!
  12. Posted a picture of the train and accidentally posted it vertically, which prompted jokes about going to hell, or outer space.
  13. When I owned a home, a set of tracks ran behind the house and I could see the trains pass by, including the Amtrak. Even though it’ll likely be dark I’ll be looking out for it.
  14. Made a strategic decision to use the men’s room at the station after hearing about the small stalls on the train.
  15. Regarding #13: Turns out the track we’re on is different than the one that goes behind my house. Well, poop.
  16. We’re going at about 40 miles an hour, neat.
  17. Yes, I downloaded a speedometer app to my phone just for the occasion.
  18. I keep bumping my head on the luggage rack >.<
  19. The self closing doors on the train threw me off at first.
  20. I thought the San Antonio station was tiny, but the San Marcos stop was just a shade and some benches!
  21. After the San Marcos stop we started booking it to Austin at 70mph
  22. Once in Austin, we picked up a bunch of furries and spent the rest of the trip in the lounge car.
  23. Pup hoods…. *sigh*
  24. The train ride was great!
  25. THURSDAY/ARRIVAL – Thing I forgot #1: Aftershave >.<
  26. Union Station in Dallas is both impressive and depressing at the same time.
  27. I’m on the 7th floor; I figured I’d live dangerously and not ask for a lower floor like I did last year.
  28. I know the people in the room next door, yay!
  29. Really short fursuiters will never not be cute!

    IMG_0858
    29. SO KYOOT!
  30. My fursuit head fan is working out really well; I just have to figure out how to hide the power cable better.
  31. I was going to wait for the reg line to die down but said heck with it and jumped in.
  32. They quickly ran out of ‘Chaotic’ tags. Not sure if it’s because of the rainbow thing or the chaotic thing.
  33. They still had plenty of Evil tags, so I guess that’s a good sign.  I went with Lawful myself
  34. FRIDAY – Had to resist the urge to talk in a bad NY accent at the nearby Cindy’s NY Deli. Fuhgetabowdit!
  35. Thing I forgot #2: Cash
  36. Left my keys in my room and trying to get used to not having them in my pocket >.<
  37. If your videogame room has only fighting games, it gets a thumbs down from me.
  38. Funny to see cookies being given away in the lobby, that’s all a bunch of furries need: SUGAR!
  39. Good job with the Fursuiting at Fiesta panel
  40. Good panel idea: Have a raffle to keep people in the panel room ’till the end
  41. Character performance how to panel was also good, though I’m irked that they took the entire hour. Leave some time for the next person, mmmkay?
  42. Nothing like delaying a bathroom run because you see a line outside the door for the next panel!
  43. Someone suggested I should get bear ears for my fursuit since I’m the ‘bear ears guy’ 😁  Bearception!
  44. While fursuiting: Why is it getting so warm in here? Oh. The battery for my fan died. BACK TO THE ROOM STAT.
  45. Sorry, normie that I squished in the elevator!
  46. Another panelist went over their time. Not cool.

    scientistbear
    5. Scientist Bear!
  47. Scary moment: Putting my cell into my back pocket while in suit and then sitting on it!  Luckily, it survived.
  48. SATURDAY – Feeling pretty good about myself; I’m usually that guy that takes his backpack everywhere, but I’ve been able to leave it in the room the whole time.
  49. Regarding #36: Putting my hotel key in the pocket where my keys usually go has helped with the OMG I DON’T HAVE MY KEYS feeling
  50. Thing I forgot #3: Heavy coat
  51. Note to self: Check the weather before getting dressed. Froze my tail off walking to breakfast wearing shorts.
  52. Cindi’s deli was great except for the ‘rolls and biscuits’
  53. Thing I forgot #4: Dark socks for my ‘Business bear’ outfit.
  54. Thing I forgot #5: Ears to wear when I’m not in suit.
  55. I think Dr. Nuka got a smaller room this year and/or they didn’t have as many chairs. LAME.
  56. Between fursuiting and walking I was dead tired by Saturday afternoon and needed a nap.
  57. I bet the normies who came to Reunion Tower over the weekend didn’t expect us!
  58. Hats off to the guy who sang “The Touch” by Stan Bush at karaoke. That took guts.
  59. Darn it karaoke lady, make sure you pick a version of the song with the words! Lucky for me, I almost know “Once Upon a Time In New York City” by heart.
  60. I saw a friend walk into into the karaoke room while I was doing my thing. He apparently didn’t think I was the one singing, didn’t bother to look at the stage and walked out.
  61. It was wonderful to meet Hollyfox! She’s a sweetie.
  62. Yeaah, if y’all could knock off the late night awoos, that’d be greaaat.

    IMG_20190330_080534874
    52. Those are ROLLS
  63. SUNDAY – I had breakfast at Cindi’s each day of TFF. Except for their loose interpretation of biscuits and gravy, this was not a problem.
  64. Hey, let’s take the tunnel back to the hotel and get out of the cold…and it isn’t open on the hotel side.  Poop.
  65. Had to finish my furscience.com homework on Sunday morning, but it got done
  66. The friend I was catching a ride with home wanted to leave early, so we left early
  67. I didn’t get to wear my Sports Bear outfit at the con! *sad bear face*
  68. Being driven home was nice, got to (mostly) catch up on my sleep.
  69. Packing extra clothes for cosplay means twice the laundry to do afterwards. *pbbt*
  70. I ended up walking up and down additional 70+ floors of stairs that week according to my Fitbit. and I stayed on the 7th floor. Funny how that works!

42 Things I Noticed at Guadalupe State Park

It has been a while since my last solo adventure at Guadalupe State Park. I had spent a night with friends in freezing temperatures back in December, but that’s neither here nor there.  As always, I noticed a few things…

handwriting
#1 Needs Improvement
  1. I wrote this list down on paper and thought about posting scans of the pages. I looked at my terrible handwriting and thought better of it.
  2. I think I like taking Blanco Road up to the park instead of 281, fewer lights and a more relaxed drive.
  3. Also more jackasses tailgating you on the slower parts, but what can you do?
  4. Had to take a site with electricity due to the water-only campsites being worked on, oh well.
  5. Nothing like that OH GOD, PLEASE DON’T BREAK feeling when putting up tent poles.
  6. Of course the sun comes out after I set up the tent and go hiking.
  7. Sound that I don’t miss: Vehicles.
  8. Yes, I have my phone on me, for pictures. With the ringer muted and my smartwatch on, I don’t have to worry about missing calls.
  9. There aren’t many people here, which is nice.
  10. Since I don’t go outdoors as often as I should, I find myself constantly wondering what all the noises are.
  11. Lots of butterflies about, even managed to photograph a few.
  12. More work in the park being done near the river, not sure what’s going on there.
  13. Beginning of hike: Feels good! One hour later: Whew!  Nearing camp on the hike back: OMG ARE WE THERE YET?
  14. Got spooked by a large bird taking off from the branches above me, nothing like that WOOSH of big wings flapping.
  15. As I neared camp, I wondered if maybe I should have packed sandwiches instead of canned food.

    butterfly
    #11 Butterfly!
  16. Surprised I haven’t burned off my eyebrows from lighting my camp stove yet.
  17. It’s nice to have camping cooking equipment instead of borrowing from the kitchen.
  18. Upon further review, hot food for lunch hit the spot!
  19. Slightly disappointed that I still have a cell signal, but at the same time it’s good to know it’s there.
  20. I’d been going nuts trying to find one of my flashlights only to find I had left it in my tent when I folded it up back in April.
  21. Note to self: Take the picture first before trying to move in closer. Armadillos spook easily.
  22. Also: Don’t only pack food things that contribute to heartburn. Off to H-E-B.
  23. Yes, I always have to say ‘LET THERE BE LIGHT’ whenever I light my lantern.
  24. Had a story idea pop in my head mid-afternnon. It had an unfortunate ending until a more optimistic one came to me during dinner. Don’t write when hangry if you want happy endings.
  25. If you like them, they’re ‘critters,’ if you don’t, they’re ‘varmints.’
  26. They had better not be any awoo-ing while I’m trying to sleep tonight.
  27. Heard a bunch of what I hope were fireworks at around 8:24pm.
  28. This being Texas, gunfire isn’t necessarily unusual, though.
  29. Shop towels aren’t bad for washing dishes.
  30. Always gotta find that one dark spot in camp for, how can I put it, ‘taking care of business’ without having to walk to the men’s room 😀
  31. Got spooked by a pair of raccoons fighting in a nearby tree.
  32. I had put up my food and know to not feed the wildlife, so to the victor, go no spoils.
  33. I’m not saying I’m paranoid about raccoons, but I’m making damn sure the Excelsior (my Honda CR-v) is locked whenever I’m not nearby.
  34. Almost fell into temptation during the trip to H-E-B, but avoided stopping at the Whataburger across the street for dinner.
  35. Thing I forgot: Radio.
  36. Idea: Replace the ‘nut-buster’ tripod chair I use in the tent with a small beanbag.
  37. Nice to know the animal I’ve been hearing for the last half hour was just an armadillo
  38. Armadillos are noisy!

    cooking
    #17 A perfect fit!
  39. My battery pack can charge my phone all the way…now that I have a smaller phone!
  40. The overnight weather was perfect, cool without being too cold.
  41. I chose poorly at breakfast; sometimes a McDonald’s McGriddle isn’t worth the lousy service.
  42. Going to pass by my old office on the drive home, going to be hard to not flip the bird at the building as I pass.

47 Things I Noticed at Garner State Park

1
#25: Darn skippy

After (too many) years since my last trip to the iconic Texas summer getaway, I decided to take stay for a night to see if anything had changed since then.  I’m glad to say that the park is mostly the same, but I did notice a few things…

  1. It is only a two hour drive from San Antonio to Garner, as opposed to three and a half from my parent’s house. WHAT TOOK ME SO LONG?
  2. I took Highway 90 on the way over, and will likely take the ‘scenic route’ on the way home.
  3. Shocked to find hardly any vehicles at the park office, think I picked a perfect time to come!
  4. Temperature notwithstanding, anyway.
  5. Slept without the benefit of air conditioning at home the night before to prepare myself.  Not too hard.
  6. Resisting the urge to turn on my CR-V’s air conditioner on the drive over, however, was quite difficult!
  7. Lost my cell signal somewhere between Sabinal and the park.  Didn’t miss it…much.
  8. Okay, maybe I missed it a little, but that’s because I’m waiting to hear back about an interview.
  9. Despite the low number of cars at the park office, I still had to wait a bit.
  10. I pulled number 70 and the last one helped was 65. People have no patience!
  11. My original plan was to stay two nights, but I shortened it to one…maybe once it isn’t a billion degrees out.
  12. It has been so long, I only have vague memories, but a few were jostled loose when I drove by the campsite I (think) I stayed in last time.
  13. Canyonero!
    #13: Canyonero!

    Upon reaching my site, I had to take a picture of my CR-V like it’s in one of those SUV commercials.

  14. Set up my tent only to find the zipper on the door isn’t working quite right.  Crap.
  15. Only packed sandwiches and snacks to eat; I have no desire to prepare or eat any hot food while I’m here.
  16. Not bringing my stove and any food to heat up made packing harder somehow.
  17. Chili lime chips are the closest I’ll get to heat today.
  18. I’m keeping my Pebble Time smartwatch on even though my cell phone is kaputski. It still works as a pedometer, and well, a watch.
  19. Hiked down to the riverbank, had the obligatory ‘slip on the muddy ground/slick rocks’ moment.
  20. It is hard to resist taking panoramic pictures.  Some beautiful country, here.
  21. Finding trash around cheeses me off, and I pick up what I can.
  22. I can appreciate the irony in the gift shop selling bottle openers.
  23. Yes, I bought one, because why not?
  24. Picked up a cane sugar Dr. Pepper from the ‘Stinkin’ Sweet’ candy store to make sure it wasn’t defective.
  25. Also bought a bumper sticker.  Thanks to some unintended help from Verizon (see #7) it’s pretty easy to stay unplugged.
  26. Didn’t do any tubing, but went for a refreshing swim by the dam.
  27. Is there a rule that says the only people that buy portable speakers have to have the crappiest taste in music?
  28. The tube/paddleboat rental shack is no more, replaced by a trailer.
  29. They also have a food truck ‘Garner Grill.’  Dunno if they have tacos.
  30. Spent most of the afternoon sitting at my campsite, listening to the radio and working on this list.

    BUNNY!
    BUNNY!
  31. I also spent about twenty minutes just looking at birds.
  32. Didn’t do much, really, but that’s kind of the point.
  33. My $15 Emerson analog radio picks up The Eagle from San Antonio, yet my CR-V doesn’t. Huh.
  34. BUNNY!
  35. Jackrabbits are freaking HUGE.
  36. Saw a guy walk into the men’s room shower followed by his dog.  Damn furries.
  37. Garner Grill has the best food truck slogan ever: “Where fat free can take a hike.” No tacos, though.
  38. They did have burgers, of which I partook.  Hooray for convenience!
  39. Got a story idea while waiting for my food. Hooray for inspiration!
  40. I was a little surprised at how active the wildlife got once the sun went down.
  41. Annoying music coming from a car at a nearby camp. If his battery dies, and they ask: No, I don’t have jumper cables.
  42. Annoying music stops, and I can now hear music coming from somewhere else. *sigh*

    So purdy!
    So purdy!
  43. You don’t know how sunburned you are until try to go to sleep.
  44. It was a fitful night’s sleep. I’m not sure if it was the heat or my bedding that kept me up.
  45. One night of tent camping is definitely enough in Texas’s August heat.
  46. The scenic route home was a fun little drive.
  47. I look forward to coming back when the temperature isn’t so brutal!